Uber-Emo & Butt-Hurt

“… do not … expend unnecessary energy reacting…” – The Language of Letting Go 

The 12&12 tells us, “Our first objective will be the development of self-restraint.” It goes on to suggest that we avoid speaking and acting hastily or rashly, stop participating in tirades and arguments, avoid snap judgments and quick-tempered criticism, and stop sulking or silently scorning (aka acting uber-emo and butt hurt). These are emotional booby traps. By working our program diligently, consistently, and taking a daily written inventory to see where we can improve, we learn to restrain our tongue, texts and emails in order to sidestep the traps, thus avoiding a ton of needless pain and suffering. When I stop reacting and instead respond kindly, detach with love as needed and focus on gratitude… ILML! 

– JamieQ

Try it on for Size

“Happiness is contagious.” – Attitudes of Gratitude in Love 

I’m that guy out there yelling “I LOVE MY LIFE!!!” in the parking lot, on the sidewalk, at home, at my office and in my car (and I’m not the only one anymore). I’ll yell it out at a park or just about anywhere the feeling hits me. Sure, sometimes it’s a bit embarrassing, but what the heck. I’m a spreader of the life loving message. I love my life and want everyone else to know it (especially me), and hopefully love theirs. And everyone once in awhile someone yells back “I love my life too!” Those are really cool moments. The more I yell out that I love my life the more I affirm it, believe it, and pass it on. If happiness is contagious, so is loving life. So today I encourage you to try it on for size. At least once (right now if possible) throw your hands into the air, raise your voice as loud as you can and let it rip, with a big smile on your face, yell out ILML! :-))

– JamieQ

One of the Greatest Gifts

“…some friendships will last a lifetime… I will let myself enjoy the comfort, joys, and enduring quality of my friendships.” – The Language of Letting Go 

My first enduring friendship was with Johnny Reistetter. I went to preschool with him, then summer camp, and then spent summers in Puerto Vallarta, growing up with his family. He’s a normie and still is one of my very best friends. Next was my first sponsee, Mike M., who I still love and consider a dear friend. Today all my other best friends are in recovery, many of them are my sponsees. I love these men with all my heart, and feel their love for me right back into my heart. Because I work this program so diligently, applying it to every aspect of my life, my life is overflowing with friendship and love. And this gift of giving, sharing, loving and celebrating recovery through fellowship is one of the greatest gifts I have ever been given in my life, and a principle reason why, today, ILML! 

– JamieQ

“Nothing is gained by worrying… (stay out of future fear) … always be in the present moment.” – In God’s Care

It’s completely normal to be concerned about the future—which is why it’s so hard for many of us to stay out of it. Fear of the future can even be healthy if it motivates me to take action right now. But worrying about something that I can’t currently do anything at all about causes me get stuck in my dis-ease while inviting in more fear, problems and disease. Once I understand this, I next need to be hyper-aware of when I am needlessly worrying about things I cannot presently change. With this newfound understanding and awareness, when worrying crops up, I am now prepared to take the action necessary to eradicate my future fear. I do this by practicing the daily rituals of my program of action, which returns me back to gratitude, optimism and a healthy emotional state of mind … a place where, once again, ILML! 

– JamieQ

Snugly Tucked In

“Clutter and messiness, at home or in our mind, is one way of keeping people at a distance and isolating.”– Adopted from Courage to Change 

At a very young age I learned that if I kept my room clean I (1) wouldn’t get in trouble from my dad or mom, and (2) would get attention through praise that I did a good job. But being a really clean guy hasn’t prevented my mind from getting cluttered with toxic thoughts. And I’ve noticed a correlation between stinking thinking and messiness. The more cluttered up my mind is with uncomfortable thoughts, the more cluttered and messy my car and desk at work become. I can turn it all around instantly just by focusing on principles of the program like gratitude, service, spirituality, optimism, success, and love. Reading inspirational books, writing g-lists, sending out inspirational texts, journaling, praying, meditation, working with others, and attending meetings, help me get back to the center of the lifeboat. And when I’m snugly and warmly tucked in, safely surrounded by all of you, ILML! 

– JamieQ

No Room for Worrying

“I am a faith-filled and fear-free because… good is on the way.” – Until Today

Believing that great things are on the horizon is a direct result of focusing on the gratitude for the great things I have already witnessed, experienced and been blessed with. Being born into this world. My mommy holding me. My daddy throwing me into the air … and then catching me safety in his arms. Eating delicious foods. Swimming. Laughing. Running. Sleeping really soundly. Getting my first A in school. Earning my first dollar. Basking under the sun. Seeing a rainbow. Skiing down a white slope. Surfing a giant wave. Skateboarding down a hill. Kissing the girl I love. Seeing a whale. Holding my baby. Feeling safe in a meeting. Believing in God. Building a successful business. Hearing yes when I asked Dan to sponsor me. Discovering the Daily Deal. Others asking me to sponsor them. Learning to play guitar. Building a house. The list is endless. The reality for me is that when I focus on all the gifts of life, there’s no room inside of my head for worrying. And when I’m fear-free, ILML! 

– JamieQ

Strapped to a Stretcher

“When we refuse air, light, or food, the body suffers. And when we turn away from meditation and prayer, we likewise deprive our minds, emotions, and our intuitions of vitally needed support.” – 12&12 p.97

Vitally needed support. That must be something like life support. Imagine needing to be hooked up to life support machines every time we express anger in a way that hurts others. Or when we fall into victimization and self-pity. Or when we react to everyone and everything instead of pausing long enough to respond kindly. Suddenly the paramedics would show up and strap us down to a stretcher, thrust a needle into our heart to revive us, put us on oxygen, and hook us up to an IV to get fluids flowing back into our body. I prefer to avoid all that chaos, drama, pain and suffering by sticking to a rigorous, daily program of spiritual action, which results in a high quality of emotional health. Because when I take those simple actions… ILML! 

– JamieQ